Xi suggests aligning B&R initiative with European investment plan

Xi announced that China will contribute an additional 100 billion yuan (about $14.5 billion) to the $40 billion Silk Road Fund to scale up financial support for the Belt and Road Initiative.

Leaders attend the Roundtable Summit Phase One Sessions during the Belt and Road Forum, at the International Conference Center in Yanqi Lake, north of Beijing, on May 15, 2017.

Almost 30 world leaders are taking part in the global summit on China’s Silk Road plan, a huge infrastructure project which Beijing hopes will revive ancient trade routes from Asia to Europe and Africa. In resolving to uphold the spirit of peace, cooperation, openness, transparency, inclusiveness, equality, mutual learning, mutual benefit, and mutual respect, within the framework and principles of the United Nations Charter and worldwide laws, this initiative provides an excellent model for “win-win” cooperation at the global level.

The remark comes as India, in a stand against the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) which passes through Pakistan-administered Kashmir, skipped the just-ended Belt and Road forum in Beijing.

Xi tried to mollify concern about a potential Chinese-dominated trade bloc by saying “Belt and Road” is meant to be an “open and inclusive platform for development”.

China on Monday wrapped up its first “Belt and Road Initiative” forum with the attendance of 29 state leaders and more than 1,000 foreign government representatives.

The CPEC, a cluster of road, rail and energy projects, will connect Pakistan’s southern Gwadar port on the Arabian Sea and Kashgar in China’s far western Xinjiang province.

Dozens of “Belt and Road” projects including railways and power plants have been launched since Xi unveiled the initiative in 2013. The initiative aims to bolster China’s global leadership ambitions by building infrastructure and trade links between Asia, Africa, Europe and beyond.

Meanwhile, China signed cooperation deals with 68 countries and global organisations during the forum, The Straits Times reported. She said China always followed the principle of extensive consultation with other countries on the project over which India has sovereignty concerns.

China is India’s largest trading partner, and some of the biggest Chinese firms including Alibaba, Xiaomi and Oppo have a huge presence in the country – either as investors or through their own operations.

Describing the initiative as one that can stimulate development among different sectors and industries via better infrastructure, Najib said this in turn will facilitate world transportation and logistics, so all countries can access to larger markets.